Qatar launches bid for 2020 Olympics

Gulf state wins support to host sporting event in Sept and Oct to avoid severe summer heat
Qatar launches bid for 2020 Olympics
VANCOUVER, BC - FEBRUARY 19: The Olympic rings are seen in Vancouver harbour during the early morning on day 8 of the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics on February 19, 2010 in Vancouver, Canada. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
By Andy Sambidge
Sat 27 Aug 2011 10:36 AM

The Qatar Olympic Committee has officially launched its bid to host the 2020 Olympic Games after being told it would be able to hold the event in the autumn.

Committee president Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani said Qatar's bid would "inspire peace" and would be a priority for "our youthful region".

He added in a statement posted on the committee's official website that the decision to bid for the 2020 event followed confirmation that Qatar could hold the Games later in the year to avoid the severe heat of the summer.

Officials are looking to put on the event between September 20 and October 20.

Al-Thani said: “In light of the decision of President [Jacques] Rogge and the IOC Executive Board, I am delighted to formally announce Doha’s bid to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2020.

"It is fitting that the dream of hosting the Games should come to the Middle East at this time; our bid can inspire peace and is a priority for our youthful region. 

"To simply have a chance to enter the bidding process is a step closer to realizing something very special for our nation, our region and the Olympic Movement.”

Already chosen as hosts of the football World Cup in 2022, the Gulf state is up against four cities which have already submitted bids to host the 2020 Games - Rome, Tokyo, Madrid and Istanbul.

The International Olympic Committee will decide who will host the 2020 Games at a meeting in Buenos Aires in September 2013.

Four years ago, Doha's bid for 2016 was controversially cut from the shortlist because their proposed dates were outside the window that the IOC had published.

They claimed that IOC President Jacques Rogge had led them to believe that they could host the Games outside the window, just as Sydney had done in 2000.

Sheikh Saoud Bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani, secretary general of QOC, added: “We appreciate the understanding shown by the IOC and we have listened and learned from our 2016 attempt to bid for the Games.

"This has been a fruitful journey, and we are pleased that the IOC has granted us permission to propose hosting the Games between September 20 and October 20. 

"We know that it is imperative that we guarantee ideal conditions for athletes, technicians and spectators, and ensure events are scheduled appropriately for broadcasters and that is what we will do.”

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